NOVA-Antiques was mentioned by Jura Koncius of the
NOVA-Antiques was selected Website of the Week by Evan Haning and WTOP Radio in
was designated a resource for antiques flea markets in an article in the Weekend Section of the
The highboy originated in the 18th Century in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It usually consisted of two parts, one sitting on top of another. Craftsmen from all over the world first started producing these masterpieces and were usually the fanciest pieces of furniture in anyone’s home. The problem with highboys is that they normally stood over nine feet tall and most homes had eight foot ceilings. People then would remove the top section and many of the highboys were separated.
It is not uncommon to find high boy bottom sections and high boy top sections being sold at antique stores or antique auctions by themselves. Around the turn of the 20th Century, people started realizing the value of a highboy and started “marrying” top sections to bottom sections. A top of the line highboy consisting of a non-married (original) bottom and top sections can bring in more than $750,000. By now many of you are asking yourselves, “well how can I tell if its an original matching set or a married set?”
According to Karen Keane, who directs the auction house Skinner, Inc., the best way to tell is by checking the drawers dovetail joints. Ms. Keane says, “Each cabinetmaker has his own idiosyncrasies, and these show up in the dovetails. If the shape of the top and bottom joints differs, then there's a good chance that they each come from different sets."